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Coloured Front Doors: How to Paint Yours in a Day

My Obsession with Coloured Front Doors

As a child growing up in the western suburbs of Sydney, I don’t recall ever seeing coloured front doors. It was either not a very big thing in the late 80s and early 90s, or the trend just hadn’t landed out there at the time. Either way, the idea of coloured front doors caught my eye at some point (probably when I moved toward the city) and I’ve been obsessed with them ever since.

Now that I’m on the hunt to buy my first property down here in Melbourne, the idea of painting my own front door consumes my thoughts more times during the day then I’d care to admit. In fact, since I moved down to Melbourne I’ve been noticing tonnes of them around Richmond, where I’m currently living. Sydney; you need to up your coloured front door game, because Victoria is currently winning!

Yellow seems to be the go-to hue for coloured front doors in my area, with red coming in a close second. Yellow would probably be my preferred option, too, because it bring with it such a sense of sunny optimism, but I am completely open to other options. The house I’ve currently got my eye on – and am putting in an offer for – might not carry off a yellow front door, sadly, and here’s why.

Green Design Sustainable Home - Green Front Door Ideas TLC Interiors

Coloured Front Doors: Which Hue is for you?

If you too are infatuated with the idea of painting your front door in a dramatic new hue, you need to carefully consider a few things before you come back from the paint shop with a tin of hot pink.

Firstly, what’s the main colour of your home? Whether it’s exposed brick, weatherboard, a rendered scenario or some other material, the dominant colour of your home needs to be worked with. The home I am eyeing off to purchase, for example, is an orange brick. Sadly, a yellow door is not the best option here. As orange is a warm tone, the best front door colour would be a cooler, contrasting colour, like a navy blue, teal, green or even black.

If you have a white, cream or grey exterior, you’re a lucky duck! It’s pretty much an anything goes scenario for you, because all colours will work wonderfully. I personally find that yellow pops wonderfully against a charcoal grey exterior, as does red. A white weatherboard or rendered home can benefit greatly from a glossy black door, too. It really depends on your personal preference, but do take time to think about what will work with the exterior colours (your front gate/fence included), not just which colour is your favourite.

It’s also wise to think about the colours inside your home – particularly in your entryway. The door is going to open into it, and the front door painted in a dramatic hue will be quite impactful here, so think about whether or not that yellow door is going to clash with your mahogany timber flooring.

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Painting Coloured Front Doors: Easier than you Think!

I am the master of the shortcut, so I do like to take as many as I can when it coms to DIY – as long as it doesn’t come at the cost of a quality finish, of course.

Painting your front door is pretty easy, actually, and probably a lot simpler than you think. Here are some pointers:

  • There’s no need to take the door off it’s hinges. Just ensure you remove all the locks and other fixtures before you start
  • Give the door a good clean with a damp cloth to remove excess dirt, dust and grime
  • If there are windows or glass panels on the door, use painters tap around the edges to protect them
  • A light sand will be required in case there are any bumps in the existing paint job
  • Apply a primer/sealer (like this one) to the door before you apply your paint colour
  • Once that’s dry, you can then apply your paint colour
  • Note that two coats of primer might be required on an existing dark door
  • Two coats of your new exterior paint colour are recommended for best results, too
  • A roller is the best way to paint the door. Use a foam brush on raised or depressed panels.


I will be following the above steps myself the moment I get in my new home. I’ll keep you posted as to whether I secure the one I am currently going for (cross your fingers for me) and would love to hear your ideas below on what colours you think I should go for.

Do you love coloured front doors? Do you have one? I’d love you to tag me into a photo of yours. My Instagram handle is @tlifecreative.


Chris Carroll

Outside of writing this blog, Chris is an interior designer, presenter and author. He’s also spent time on TV, on Channel 10’s Changing Rooms, as well presenting segments on Channel 7’s Sunrise and The Morning Show. If you’d like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here

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I’m interior designer Chris Carroll, and at TLC Interiors we’re all about helping you create an amazing home without breaking the bank. It’s affordable designer style at its best, and we make the whole process easy and fun for clients & readers alike!

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